Skype has launched a series of prepaid cards for the UK market, allowing you to top up your Skype account from a number of physical retailers.
Skype has partnered with five UK retailers to distribute these top-up cards. Asda, Currys PC World, Sainsburys' and WHSmith will make them available in some 1,400 shops combined around the country.
These Skype cards will be available in two variations - £10 and £20. Both can be redeemed online and used against various paid Skype features, including Skype-to-phone calls, text messages and group video conferencing.
You'll also be able to use these Skype prepaid cards against the various Skype subscription packages. These include £5.74 per month for unlimited calls to european landlines, or £9.76 per month to open it out to the entire world.
The cards themselves feature a scratch-off panel on the back concealing a PIN number, which must then be inputted on the secure Skype website.
The UK has become only the second country to adopt these top-up cards for Skype users - the first being Mexico. Previously, a credit card was necessary in order to place more funds into your Skype account.
This new funding model will also allow the gifting of Skype credit, much like you can do with iTunes credit.
Interestingly, this move from Skype follows quickly on the back of the Windows 8 launch. Skype - which is now owned by Microsoft - has been revamped and tightly integrated with the Windows 8 experience.
Microsoft clearly wants to make Skype even more synonymous with internet communication - both on desktop computers and Windows Phone 8 smartphones like the HTC Windows 8X and the Nokia Lumia 920. Part of that process evidently involves easier access to Skype funds.
According to Engadget the UK represents one of the first of many countries to get these prepaid Skype cards.